Wednesday, April 8, 2009

A Birth Story--for my Son, on his half-birthday

Dear Charles,

6 months ago yesterday, I woke up at 2am with what I thought were terrible gas pains. I had a doctor's appointment scheduled for that afternoon, because my ultrasound the day before (Monday) showed that the cord was around your neck. They wanted to do a non-stress test to be sure that all was well in the womb, and that you could continue to stay in there for a few more days. I was already set to be induced because of my gestational diabetes on that Wednesday night. I remember feeling giddy that the likelihood of having a 10-9-08 baby was almost inevitable at that point (Amy and Tiff were probably jealous for a minute there!!) I had plans to go to work on Tuesday. By 4am, I figured I might want to start "timing" these gas pains. By 6 am, Daddy was awake and calling into work. I was still in denial that this WAS labor. I now know that it really was labor. I was having a baby!!

We went to the doctor's office for the NST at 3pm that day. I had been contracting all day long, even though I didn't really know it. The NST came out perfectly, and Dr. Klyn told us to stay at home until the contractions started getting much closer together. At that point, they were still very sporadic, and Dr. Klyn was not convinced I was in full blown labor yet. I was not dilated very far at that point, and she still thought we might still have another day or we would go ahead with the induction on Wednesday night.

Daddy and I came home, and we relaxed for a bit. I wanted to grill the steak we had waiting in the refrigerator, because I was afraid it was going to go bad. I have never thanked your Dad for suggesting chicken noodle soup and a grilled cheese, but I really should. He saved me a whole lot of suffering later on!! By 9pm, my contractions were getting worse and worse. I could barely talk through them at that point, and we were having to try the different laboring positions and techniques that we had so diligently learned. Mostly, though, I just rocked on the bed in agony, while Dad rubbed my back. Around 11pm, I knew we needed to get going. I still remember the drive in the car on the way there. I used to always think that crazy ladies in the movies, yelling at their husbands, was just some sort of Hollywood farce. But, I learned that you really do become a crazy lady. I told him to throw out the air freshener that was in the car, because it was going to make me sick. I yelled at him to hit the gas. I was certain we were having a baby in the car, at that very moment :o) Yeah, crazy. He got us there safe and sound, and next thing I knew, I was in a wheelchair, waiting for the triage nurse to push me into the elevator.

We got into triage, and I was dilated to 4.5+ cm. It was music to my ears to hear that they were going to let us stay. I don't know what I would have done if they had sent us home!! At that point, the highlight of the experience so far, was the realization in triage that I wasn't going to have to be induced, and that you decided to come on your own. I really was in labor!!...... And then I puked :0) The nurse asked if I wanted the anesthesiologist, and I immediately gave in. I had wanted a natural birth. I had studied the techniques and educated myself, but when it got down to it, I was in a lot of pain, I was exhausted, and I needed some rest if I was going to have a baby the next day. I called my doula and told her about my decision. I probably should have waited for her to talk me down, but I was ready. I knew what I needed to do at that point.

By 1am, I had the epidural, and I was resting so easy at that point. I labored well into the morning hours. At 5am, my water broke on it's own. No assistance was needed by the doctors or the nurses. You knew you wanted out of there, and you wanted out right away. By 10am, I was ready to push. I pushed, and pushed, and pushed and pushed. I watched in the mirror as your head would appear, and then disappear. You had different plans for your entrance into this world. After 3 long hours of pushing, and the help of Dr. Klyn and Dr. Wolfe, we collectively decided that your little head was turned the wrong way, and you were only going to come out via Cesarean section. I was devastated that my plan had seemingly flown out the window. But, at that moment, and after those many hours, my desire to meet you once and for all, outweighed the angst about my "plan." You had a different plan, and you showed us that we needed to learn to start compromising right away.

At 2:27pm, Dr. Klyn and Dr. Wolfe pulled you out of my tummy. I remember waiting to hear you cry, and asking your Dad if you were okay. I was panicky, as I couldn't see a single bit of what was going on. I just wanted to hear and see my little boy! And then I heard your little cry. Oh, sweet relief!! I have never felt so many emotions in my entire life. Your Dad brought you over, all swaddled up like a burrito, just waiting to check out your mama. My heart melted. My little
Charlie was here.

8 lbs, 9oz * 19.5 inches * 2:27pm * October 8, 2008


You are 6 months old today. You can sit on your own, and roll over and over on the living room floor. You love sweet potatoes, and squash, but you aren't so sure about the fruits quite yet. They are sour!! You absolutely love water, and have never once complained about bath time. I think you get that from me. I can't wait to introduce you to Lake Michigan, Gun Lake and the pool!! You were a fussy boy in the beginning, but now you are such an easy going little dude. You only get fussy when you are hungry or tired. You are curious about Sylvia, and when she meows, you stop what you are doing, and stare her down intently. She really does love you. I can see it in her eyes. She wants your attention, and you are surely going to give it to her. You love the Jumperoo, and Daddy makes you laugh hysterically while you are jumping away. You are ticklish on your belly, your thighs, on your cheeks, and on your feet. You are one ticklish little boy! We love to get a giggle out of you on the changing table before bed. You already love ESPN. I hate to say it, but the TV has grabbed your attention, and it's all about sports for you. Basketball, hockey, you name it. You love the movement on the screen. I wonder if you will be a sports freak like your Dad is. You have big blue eyes, and puffy cheeks, and you have that rosebud mouth like I have. We have a ton of nicknames for you. Monkey, Sir, Mr. Man, Little Buddy, just to name a few. You make funny sounds, and you can contort your face in such a manner that I crack up every single time. You really do make us laugh our heads off!

You are a light in this dark world, my son. I am truly joyful to be your mama, and I can't wait to get to know you better. You are a blessing that I am so proud to have created.

Happy Half Birthday, Charlie.

I love you,



Erin said...

aww em! that gave me tears! happy 1/2 birthday charlie! heis a cute little guy curtis and em!

hulalula said...

Happy half birthday Charlie! And happy 6 months of motherhood to you, Em!

kristen said...

Aw, tears for me too! What a beautiful story, addressed to him... I'm a big teary, melty puddle of goo after reading it :) (ps - I'm working on his images today, he's such a cutie pie!)

~marie~ said...

Crying here too :-) How beautiful! Your little boy is absolutely adorable -- Happy Half Birthday Mr. Charlie!

Heather said...

such a sweet post, Em! Happy half-birthday, Charlie!

The Loucks Family said...

so sweet em!

Amanda said...

Happy half birthday buddy!

Christina said...

Wow two sweet stories this morning! Happy half birthday Charlie!

Trinity said...

I'm definitely crying as well. What a beautiful story!
Happy half birthday, Charlie!

Kerri said...

Happy half birthday little Charlie!